Nantucket interior designer Anne Becker

A soft color palette and understated coastal-inspired furnishings help create a sense of warmth in the spacious upstairs family room, which leads out to a balcony overlooking Nantucket’s Medouie Creek.

A Nantucket home embodies classic design

Legendary interior designer Albert Hadley once said, “Decoration is really about creating a quality of life… That’s what all this is about, not just what’s in and what’s out.” Known for his sophisticated yet user-friendly designs, the late Hadley made being a decorator in the mid and late 20th century like being a rockstar, says Nantucket interior designer Anne Becker. Becker notes that Hadley’s eye-catching designs—an adventurous blend of traditional and contemporary— were unique in his day and are still considered great today.

Fitting that Becker incorporated one of Hadley’s designs—a green, leaf-patterned window shade—in her design work in a new home on Nantucket’s Medouie Creek Road in 2007. These particular shades serve as more than just a decorative way of drawing in the bucolic meadowland surrounding the property—they are also indicative of the timeless design choices throughout the entire house. Instead of simply relying on what was trendy, Becker set out to make informed design choices that would stand the test of time and provide the understated coastal comfort the laid-back homeowners sought.

During her initial meetings with the homeowners, Becker says the clients—a husband and wife who have three now-adult children—knew they didn’t want their summer home to feel like a typical Nantucket beach house, but rather feel more like a lake house. “One thing she said to me as we started working together,” Becker recalls, “was, ‘I’ll be honest with you: I have no idea what I like, I just know what I don’t like.’ When someone knows themself that well, it makes things a lot easier—even though it does sound like a challenge, it put it all in perspective right upfront.” And it gave Becker, along with architect Lisa Botticelli and builder Patrick Hehir, the opportunity to play with design options.